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Genetic Architecture: How Do Genes Make Us?
How do the multitudes of variations in genes combine to result in who people are today?
How do the multitudes of variations in genes combine to result in who people are today? Genes are stretches of DNA that contain the information to make proteins, and variants in these genes are what make people similar or different from one another.
But how can tiny changes in discrete molecules of DNA result in the vast, continuous variation people see in humanity, like in the huge range of heights between the shortest and tallest? In the early 1900s, this was the focus of a fierce debate in biology- between those who thought inheritance was continuous, like blending paints, and those that thought it was discrete.
The surprising resolution of this debate still frames how people think about genetic variation and its effect on traits like height today- and how, with modern genetic sequencing tools, people can pinpoint exactly which variation affects these kinds of ‘complex’ traits, known as ‘genetic architecture’.
Terkko / Internet
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